LA Opera and SongFest Announce New Program for Emerging Artists

By Logan Martell

LA Opera and SongFest have partnered together to launch The Eva & Marc Stern SongFest – LA Opera Fellowship Program, granting further opportunities for rising singers to hone their craft and perform before audiences.

For the last 23 years, the SongFest program has helped singers and pianists from their venue at The Colburn School. Students of this year’s SongFest program, which runs from May 12 to June 3, can expect rigorous training, engaging lessons, and meaningful discussion to explore their song and repertory choices; with the new collaborative program, spanning from June 4 to June 10, students can now learn under LA Opera’s artists and instructors through a number of rehearsals and masterclasses.

Rosemary Ritter, founder and Artistic Director of SongFest said, “When I first met with Christopher Koelsch [LA Opera’s Sebastian Paul and Marybelle Musco President and CEO] about this exciting collaboration, it became clear that SongFest and LA Opera are a natural fit for a joint effort. For the past 22 years, SongFest has been driven by engaging some of the most inspiring teachers and artists and inviting them into a positive environment where they dialogue daily with the singers and pianists. It doesn’t matter if the material is art song or opera; in the end, it is at the core of communication and using our tools as artists to communicate with audiences in a real way. My hope is that artists from other disciplines—such as stage actors, poets, and others—will be brought in to share their process. Singing is about words and communication. The Stern Fellowship Program will bring that philosophy to the next level, and LA Opera is the perfect partner with whom to make that possible.”

The new program honors the efforts of Marc and Eva Stern, who have spearheaded a number of projects with LA Opera, such as Wagner’s “Ring” cycle, and arranged for notable opera stars, such as Renee Fleming, to bring their talents to audiences in Los Angeles. Through their patronage, the Sterns have given many young artists the support to flourish over the years.